Tag: maple sap

Maple log — finishing boil

We used our DigiBoil 65L 240V pot to finish the sap since it’s quick to remove from the heat once the syrup is ready (and it’s got a spigot that makes emptying the pot easier). This also gave us a good picture of how long the DigiBoil is going to take to boil wort when we’re making beer. Yesterday, with temps in the upper 30’s, it took about 1h50m (basically two hours) to boil 10 gallons of concentrated sap. Today, with temps in the upper 40’s, it took about 50 minutes to boil 7 gallons of concentrated sap.

Sunday 05 March 2023
15:44 59F
16:40 167F
17:17 203F
17:34 208F and rapidly boiling
1h50m to boil.

Flamed out just after midnight

Monday 06 March 2023

09:43AM – 68F turned on 500W
09:50AM – Turned on 2nd switch
09:56AM – 111F – turned on 3rd switch
10:32AM – 7 gallons is now boiling
About 50 minutes to boil.
Maple flame out at 2:34PM

Bottled, we have 3.5 gallons of maple syrup from our first run

Mid-Season Maple Collection Status

So far, we’ve collected about 121 gallons of maple sap. We started boiling the sap on the 23rd using our new maple evaporator.

Maple Sap Collection Log

Date Location Quantity
2/14/2023 All trees except river 60
2/18/2023 All trees except river 20
2/23/2023 All trees except river 15
2/25/2023 River 6
2/26/2023 Back woods and front yard 12
2/26/2023 Top of Driveway – east and west 8

Maple Tapping

Instead of taps with a hook for a bucket (which seemed, to me, like it would put a lot of stress on the tree!), we use ratchet straps to hold our maple buckets. One end of the “S” is passed into the fabric loop that holds the other “S” — and that other “S” becomes our bucket hook. I like the bright orange straps because it makes finding trees in the woods very easy (bright white buckets look obvious too, but they can hide behind the tree).

Our first set of buckets has large holes drilled into the lids — which are great for larger trees with multiple taps. But the new buckets we bought this year have tube-sized holes to prevent rain from leaking into the bucket.

2023 Maple Season – First Sap Collection

We tapped trees for the last few days and have our first sap collection — thirteen five-gallon buckets (not completely full, but around 4.5 gallons per bucket … so not 65 gallons but at least 58.5 gallons) waiting to run through the reverse osmosis.

This year, our starting sap measured around 1.006-1.008 SG at around 50 degrees. The reverse osmosis is running at just under 100 psi (at 100 psi, we are not getting any sugar water out). The output sugar water is measuring at 1.022 … which is 3.7 times as concentrated as before we filtered the sap.

The flow rate is about a gallon every ten minutes, or six gallons an hour.

Maple Sap Reverse Osmosis

Since I had the reverse osmosis system laid out for assembly, I figured I could take a picture to show how the filters are connected in series. Each filter “cleans” water out of the maple sap — that water is fed into a common output tube where we collect gallons of water (the clean water output lines are removed here so we can see the path maple sap travels, ignoring the clean water). We use this water for rinsing sappy stuff as we collect, filter, and boil the sap … also water we drink, bring out to the chickens and turkeys, give the cat, dump in the washer.

The “dirty stuff” that normally gets discarded? That’s the concentrated sap — each filter’s “dirty stuff” line is connected to the input of the next filter. Which then “cleans” more water from the sap and passes the “dirty stuff” down the line.

The maple “setup” is the reverse of the “drinking water” setup — below — where the “dirty stuff” goes to a common drain line for disposal and the clean water is sent to the input of the next filter for farther cleaning.